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Emmanuel Adeyemi, the self-proclaimed prophet who allegedly chained 28 persons in his apartment in the Oke-Ira area of Ogba, Lagos State, will be charged with child abuse and inhuman treatment, PUNCH Metro has learnt.
This is just as the families of two of the victims showed up on Tuesday to say they brought their relations to the prophet for prayers, but they were not aware that they were subjected to inhuman treatments.
PUNCH Metro had reported on Tuesday that the Lagos State Police Command arrested the 70-year-old prophet on Friday around 12pm when the victims, including 17-year-old Toba Adeyemi, the suspect’s son, were found chained in an apartment on Olamidun Close, Unity Estate in the Oke-Ira area.
The victims, who were 15 adults and 13 children, were later freed by police operatives and reportedly handed over to the officials of the Lagos State Ministry of Youths, Sport and Social Development.
The ministry was said to have secured the victims in a government’s shelter in the Ikorodu area.
It had also been reported that Emmanuel claimed the victims were mentally sick and he chained them in the house to pray for them and get them healed.
PUNCH Metro learnt on Tuesday that Emmanuel, who was still detained at the Area G Command, Ogba, would be charged to court for child abuse and inhuman treatment.
The Police Public Relations Officer, SP Dolapo Badmos, who confirmed the development, said investigations proved that Toba was not mentally sick as his father claimed.
She said, “The police have established a case of child abuse and inhuman treatment against the suspect. Although the suspect claims the victims were deranged, the police have confirmed that the suspect’s son is not deranged.
“The prophet will be charged to court. The son had committed no offence other than running away from home. The police are working on the mental and health status of the other victims.
“Two families have shown up for the victims so far, and they said they brought their relations to the pastor for prayers, but that they did not know that they would be subjected to inhuman treatments.
“If the suspect was truly a traditional practitioner, there are registration procedures with the state government and a licence he should have.”
When PUNCH Metro got to the apartment on Tuesday, it was deserted.
A neighbour, Joseph Emmanuel, said, “I have known the man for more than a year. He claimed he could cure mental illness. He is popularly known as Baba Woli. At night when you walked around the house, you would hear strange noises and people shouting at one another. Sometimes, they also threw a party and shared food in the vicinity.”
A police source told one of our correspondents that some shallow pits were found in the house where the prophet allegedly buried some of his victims.
The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, however, said the suspicion was not true.